# Does Smoking Affect Bodybuilding? Possible Side Effects
Yes, it does! As we know that smoking is very bad for our lungs and also negatively affects our muscle-building process.
> Smoking may feel like a very masculine habit to you, but it damages the muscles that build masculinity.
Moreover, it also shrinks the blood vessels which bring nutrients and oxygen to our muscles.
***So, if you are a fitness freak, smoking can affect your gain.***
Because tobacco smoking can be a major cause of your decline in physical fitness and your small habits are the ones that can make you or break you.
Before knowing the side effects of smoking on bodybuilding you should know why smoking becomes addictive.
## **Why Does Smoking Become Addictive?**
Nicotine which is produced after the consumption of tobacco makes it addictive. Because after inhaling the smoke of tobacco it directly goes to your lungs where nicotine gets absorbed quickly.
> As a result, it rises the blood concentration of nicotine and triggers the release of dopamine which is also the happy hormone.
Then our body starts cravings for the same release of dopamine and that’s why it becomes addictive.
*Simply put, smoking is a pleasurable sensation that our body starts craving after experiencing it once.*
And that’s the reason why people keep smoking even after knowing the adverse effects of it.
Side effects of smoking on bodybuilding
Fitness enthusiasts should avoid smoking because it has so many bad effects on their physical fitness and performance which will negatively affect muscles.
### #1. **Reduction in Workout Performance**
Some people are so addicted to smoking that they even smoke before or after their workout.
But let me tell you that you need to stop that because it can lead to serious health problems like even heart attacks.
Because when you do intense workouts your heart rate increases and generally a smoker’s heart beats 30% faster than a non-smoker’s.
Moreover, it can also prevent your muscle from having oxygen-rich blood when needed and as a result, it will lead to low endurance.
### #2. **Lowers Your Testosterone Level**
Testosterone positively impacts muscle building in men. In addition, it is responsible for the maintenance of your muscles.
Androgen receptors that are present in muscles bind testosterone to maintain muscle fibers which means that low testosterone will lead to muscle loss.
And smoking has a bad effect on your testosterone levels. Moreover, smoking also damages the testosterone-producing cells which will also lead to low testosterone.
It is also believed that degraded muscles turn into fat which gets stored in unwanted places like the chest or maybe the stomach.
### #3 **Makes You Insulin Resistance**
Smoking can also affect your muscle growth by making your body Insulin resistant.
Insulin resistance can lead to a decrease in energy levels which will hugely impact your muscle-building process.
Because insulin works as a signal for muscle to absorb glucose in the bloodstream. And glucose is responsible for producing ATP energy cells for the body.
So, when your body becomes insulin resistant it will not be able to absorb glucose which will lead to a low number of ATP cells in your body.
And a low number of ATP cells means that your body will not be able to provide energy when needed.
### 4. **Increases the level of Stress Hormone**
You indeed feel happy and satisfied after smoking but you will be surprised to know that it can also increase the level of stress hormones.
Smoking can lead to an increment in the stress hormone called cortisol, which negatively affects testosterone production in our body.
And as we know, testosterone is a very important hormone for muscle growth so it’s vital to avoid smoking if you’re into bodybuilding.
### #5. **Reduces Oxygen Availability**
We need oxygen during exercise, and tobacco consumption can reduce oxygen availability.
Because carbon monoxide is present in tobacco smoke replaces the oxygen present in the hemoglobin, which is an oxygen-carrying molecule in the blood.
Therefore, this replacement of oxygen with carbon monoxide in the blood leads to a reduction in oxygen.
Which as a result affects your performance in the gym.
with this you have got proper knowledge of [**how smoking affects weightlifting and muscle growth**](https://health-tuneup.com/does-nicotine-affect-weight-and-muscle-growth/), and why you should avoid it. Moving ahead to conclude the overall discussion.
Smoking is bad for bodybuilding as well as for your overall health. It kills millions of people every year.
But despite that fact, people are not able to quit it because of its addictive nature.
Although nicotine spikes the release of dopamine and gives pleasure feeling it’s a big no for being addicted to it.
So, it makes you happy for a shorter time and has a bad effect in the longer run. Moreover, it also harms your muscle-building processes.
Because it affects some important body functions which help in maintaining muscle and performing better in the gym.
So, now we hope that knowing the side effects of smoking on bodybuilding will give you a strong reason to quit smoking.
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Crylon Folwer is a dietician who campaigns for the use of a customized diet plan to live the most healthy lifestyle.